In February this year, one of our generous readers, David, asked if we knew any Tibetan charities that he could donate to. Since then we’ve been collecting the information for this post of groups that we know are doing phenomenal work for Tibetans, both inside Tibet and in exile. If you’d like to bring a little comfort to your soul, consider donating as generously as you can to one of the wonderful groups below, or to any Tibetan organization that you support.
As His Holiness the Dalai Lama says, “if you practice altruism, you have more health, more friends. Your feeling is much happier. You can be a happy person.” *
The first Tibetan school created by Machik, the Ruth Walter Chungba Primary School, “became a runaway success story in its first year of operation. It made news by placing first across 53 schools in the county and undermining stereotypes about the potential of rural Tibetan children.” (From the Machik website.) Check out the Machik website to learn more about their amazing work.
Tibetan Healing Fund
Created by a remarkable Tibetan medical doctor and Buddhist monk, Dr. Kunchok Gyaltsen, the Tibetan Healing Fund improves primary healthcare and education for rural Tibetan women and children. The Tibetan Healing Fund’s priority is to assist the most disadvantaged Tibetan communities, which lack or have limited access to health care, education and technical skills and training.
Braille Without Borders, Tibet
The award-winning documentary Blindsight follows 6 blind students and the blind founder of the Braille Without Borders school in Lhasa in an attempt to summit the 23,000 foot Lhakpa Ri peak. Check out the documentary to learn the remarkable, awesomely inspiring work of this school and these kids.
IN TIBETAN COMMUNITIES IN INDIA
Lugsam Samduling Settlement Home for the Aged and Disabled
A calm, clean, peaceful refuge for elderly Tibetans who originally escaped Tibet in 1959, and spent their adult lives pioneering the Tibetan settlements in India, and now have no family to support them. We strongly support donations of any amount to the deserving residents and their caretakers.
Tibetan Nuns Project
This is a project close to our hearts, supporting over 700 nuns living in India. The nuns arrive as refugees from all over Tibet, and the nunneries created by the Tibetan Nuns Project provides them a safe space to thrive – to live, study, practice, and teach in accordance with their spiritual beliefs.
Institute of Buddhist Dialectics
The Institute of Buddhist Dialectics (IBD) is another project especially dear to us, as Lobsang Wangdu graduated from here with a Master’s in Buddhism (Madyamika) in 1995. The Institute focuses on Buddhist dialectics, an ancient form of Tibetan Buddhist study, teaches a combination of traditional Tibetan disciplines such as Buddhist philosophy, classical literature and language, and modern Western subjects. (Image of monks by Greg Goodman.)
IN THE SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA
Tibetan Community Center Project of the Tibetan Association of Northern California (TANC)
After many years of dreaming, in 2010 the Tibetan Association of Northern California (TANC) purchased a Tibetan Community Center – Dhe Zhi Phuntsog Ling – in Richmond, California, that is slowly being brought up to code to a level that will allow full-fledged use by the community. Great progress has been made, but we still require major funding before the building can be used for our children’s Tibetan language and music classes, prayer gatherings, and more.
- For more (uncurated) organizations that support Tibet and Tibetans, you can check out www.heartintibet.org, which is devoted to promoting and supporting humanitarian aid organizations working in Tibetan communities.
- The Tibet Fund: Under the patronage of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, The Tibet Fund has been the primary funding organization for health care, education, refugee rehabilitation, religious and cultural preservation,elder care and community and economic development programs serving more than 140,000 Tibetan refugees living in India, Nepal and Bhutan.
* His Holiness the Dalai Lama, on July 11, 2011, at the Kalachakra for World Peace in Washington, DC.
If you are planning a trip to Tibet, we can put you in touch with a reliable Tibetan-owned agent who will plan a non-touristy trip that gives you a real feel for Tibet. Contact us here for Tibet travel help.